Social Media is everywhere. The continual presence of this technology in our lives offers an unprecedented opportunity for businesses, creators and entrepreneurs to remain in constant contact with customers. How can you be sure you are making the most of social media marketing? What programs and apps would be the best fit for your brand? Take advantage of this introductory guide to learn some tips and tricks for staying in touch with your customers, and maximizing your profits.
The first and most unique advantage of social media is the ability to communicate directly with your customers. This is something other media such as television or print ads can not offer. This is a tremendous opportunity to promote a two way conversation with the people you most want to reach. Many platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn have a comment and feedback element for a reason. Your customers will be able to respond directly to your posts, and you should absolutely respond back. This promotes a friendly environment, while also demonstrating to your customers that what they say matters.
Of course, you can also take your conversations to your customers pages as well. Responding to people directly on their profiles can help increase your visibility to their connections, while also showing that you value their questions and concerns.
It is important to remember that everything you post on social media will become part of the brand you are promoting. A social media marketing course might be a great place to start understanding how you want your image structured.
For instance, if you are the owner of a hair salon, you might want to start up a YouTube channel with how-to videos which showcase your best selling products. You could follow that up with blog posts addressing things like “Caring for Your Colored Hair”, “Dealing With Bad Hair Days”, etc, and directing your customers to the products and services you most want to promote.
Respond to comments and questions on these platforms in a consistent way. Be friendly but formal, and try to avoid sounding overly flippant or patronizing. The way you interact with your customers online should not be any different than the way you would interact with them in person.
Keeping Customers Engaged
There are dozens of different types of social media, and each one offers different benefits. Deciding which platform is best for you can lead to fresh and fun ways to drive up sales and repeat customers.
For example, if you have a brick and mortar establishment, you can take advantage of FourSquare. By asking your customers to “check in” online every time they visit, you increase your visibility to all of their contacts. Offering incentives to check in can be very effective. Free products, coupons and discounts are great enticements for your customers to check in frequently, and every time they do, their entire friends list sees it.
If you are running an online business, Facebook may offer the best advantages. The ability to post pictures, and engage with your customers through status updates can keep your products and services fresh on their minds. Whereas, if you there is more to gain by having your customers land on certain webpages frequently, consider Tweeting out links for them to click on.
Once you have settled on a social media plan that works best for your business, it is time to track how well it’s going. Profiting from social media can mean many things, and there are several metrics you can easily track by using platforms to their fullest.
For instance, you may want to keep track of web page hits. Did your hit counter spike up after a certain tweet, or Instagram photo? What about that post made your customers click the link? How can you leverage that in the future? Valuable market research information like this is available constantly when using social media. Whether it comes in the form of retweets, number of views or number of comments, there is great information at your fingertips, and it can be used to drive up profits.
Consider setting goals based around social media. Perhaps you could strive to increase followers by 10% each month. If you reach or exceed that goal, you will be able to look at your activities, and understand what worked. If you fall short, try changing your social media tactics, and see if you can address any weak points. This is the type of instant feedback that was never available to businesses before. It can be a great opportunity for growth if you use it wisely.
Approaching social media in a smart and savvy way can lead to tremendous profit and growth. More than ever, customers and potential customers are plugged in to programs like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube and FourSquare at all times. We are far beyond the days of simply putting an ad in the classified paper and hoping for the best. This is a new and exciting time, offering a more personal and more effective connection with clients than ever before. Don’t be content to simply create a Facebook profile for your business or product. Instead, get out there and interact fully and meaningfully. It can be a great way to gauge the market, and remain ahead of any potential pitfalls. Staying connected means staying alert. You can sidestep issues gracefully while keeping your brand image exactly the way you want it. All you have to do is reach out to those customers.
If you are still hesitant or unsure about how best to proceed, Udemy has some excellent courses ready to help you leap into the social media world, and start seeing those profits.